Home | Print or Save as PDF | Save as WORD | Save as HTML

CALL for PAPERS: State, Culture, Identities. Views from the Archaeological Archives

Hybrid conference, 31 March – 1 April, 2022


States are embedded in cultural systems, they are “concept-dependent” entities while they also create concepts. In the case of Modern Greece, the state emerged at the intersection of interweaving narratives about western civilization and classical antiquity. In turn, as protector and treasurer of the cultural capital of the nation, the Greek state exerted a great deal of symbolic power, which it routinely exercises to consolidate its political power constructing in the process hegemonic identities. Yet state-building and the production of national ideology in Greece has never been a process confined to national boundaries, neither was this process completed during the nineteenth century: it is an evolving process shaped by transnational and national currents

Moreover, state formation is a dynamic phenomenon which involves the interaction of cultural, political, economic, and social networks. In Greece many of these networks revolve around the archaeological field and its institutions. The Greek Archaeological Service, the Archaeological Society and the Foreign Schools of Archaeology have served not merely as research centers and centers of education but also as central nodes in complex networks of cultural, economic, and political circles around which national and trans-national agents, foreign and national institutions organize and act. The rich archival collections housed in the above institutions serve as testimonies to this central role.

Capitalizing on the archival collections of the archaeological institutions in Greece, while also inviting researchers to engage with them, the conference aspires to bring together scholars from a variety of disciplines and fields – social history, historical and cultural sociology, social anthropology, archaeology, urban studies and architecture, museum studies, geography, art history, literary studies, and education – who take a relational approach to engage with culture as a significant determinant of the state and the state as formative agent of culture to study the changing meanings attached to modern Greek identity. While antiquity may have a central place in this discussion it is not the only point of departure.

The conference seeks to explore the changing meaning of Modern Greek identity – in plural and in its material and non-material expressions – largely within the analytical frameworks of “civilization,” “trans-Atlanticism” and “Western/European identity” and proposes the following topics.

Hellenism and Intra-Civilizational Processes in the Age of Nationalism – Empire, revolutions, and liberalism – Philhellenism and orientalism – Liberal internationalism, transatlantic markets, and grand-scale archaeology – Archaeologists as the high priests of modernity – Prehistoric archaeology and the dawn of European civilization – Civilization, empire, and classical scholarship

Civilizing and De-civilizing Processes – Highbrow/Lowbrow: Aesthetic networks and the judgment of taste – Minoritiziation, racialization and ethnic boundary-building processes – Culture and women of power – Civil strife, political participation, and undeserving citizens – Education, museums, maps, census, and national imagination – The West and the Rest

Cold War Narratives of Modernity, Development and Democracy for Greece – Philanthropy, soft power, and cultural diplomacy – Trans-Atlanticism, circuits of capital and culture – Expertise networks and the post-colonial order – Cultural Cold War, liberalism, materialism, and capitalist democracy – Cultures of consumption, heritage markets and the archaeology of tourism

European Integration at the End of History – “The Cradle of Democracy” concept – Religion and the clash of civilizations – The culture of crisis – Social movements and representations – Neoliberalism and transnational networks of culture – Population movements, refugees and the frontiers of civilization and barbarity


The conference will take place at the American School of Classical Studies and the British School at Athens in-situ and via zoom following the covid-19 measures and policies of the Schools. The conference will be conducted in English. Please send your abstracts of maximum 400 words to Despina Lalaki dlalaki@citytech.cuny.edu or Zinovia Lialiouti zlialiouti@pspa.uoa.gr by February 5, 2022. Accepted papers will be announced shortly after and a selection of works will be published in a special issue of an academic interdisciplinary journal.


Organizers and Collaborators:

- National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Section of Social Theory and Sociology, Department of Political Science and Public Administration
- University of Crete, Department of Sociology, School of Social Sciences
- City University of New York – CUNY, Department of Social Science, City Tech
- University of Amsterdam, Department of Modern Greek Studies
- King’s College London, Center for Hellenic Studies
- McGill University, Department of History and Classical Studies, Hellenic Studies Program
- The American School of Classical Studies at Athens
- The British School at Athens
- The French School at Athens
- The Irish Institute of Hellenic Studies at Athens
- The Swedish Institute at Athens

Organizing Committee:  

Despina Lalaki, City University of New York – CUNY
Zinovia Lialiouti, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
Nikos Vafeas, University of Crete
Ioannis Koubourlis, University of Crete

Scientific Committee:

Chryssanthi Avlami, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences
Tassos Anastassiadis, McGill University
Maria Boletsi, University of Amsterdam
Natalia Vogeikof-Brogan, American School of Classical Studies at Athens
Sakis Gekas, York University
Yannis Hamilakis, Brown University
Alexandra Kankeleit, Freie Universität Berlin
Ioannis Koubourlis, University of Crete
Despina Lalaki, City University of New York – CUNY
Zinovia Lialiouti, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
Suzanne Marchand, Louisiana State University
Gilles de Rapper, The French School at Athens
Despina Papadimitriou, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences
Giorgos Tsimouris, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences
Nikos Vafeas, University of Crete
Gonda Van Steen, King’s College London

Attached file: Call for papers

Printed: 2024-07-25
From the web page: Swedish Institute at Athens